SHARECOMMENTMORE

MAPLE GROVE, Minn. -- By the time Brian Fossen looked out his kitchen window, the prize of his Maple Grove yard was already gone.

"(There was a) thirty foot ash laying in my front yard," Fossen said. "I never even heard it come down."

But when trees fall, questions are raised. Like what, exactly, does insurance cover?

"Your homeowner's insurance policy pays for the repair of the property, and pays to remove the tree from the home so it's no longer a danger," said Mark Kulda of the Insurance Federation of Minnesota. "But it doesn't pay to remove the tree from the premises, or replace the tree unless you have some certain coverages."

Those are add-ons to your policy, riders that may pay for things like sewer cleanup, replacing trees, or landscaping. That all seems pretty simple, until situations like one in south Minneapolis: A tree that fell across three lots. So what happens then?

"It really goes right down the lot line," said Michael Kress, a State Farm Insurance claim representative. "You cut the tree, and if it's on your property, you're responsible for removing it."
That means whether it's your tree or your neighbor's, you take care of what's in your yard. If it harms your home, your fence or something else, your insurance will repair it. If it doesn't, you remove the tree yourself.

Just like Brian's doing.

"We haven't lost anything financially, he said. "A little shade, a little privacy. So no harm done there."